December 1998 - Twenty-four of the original 35 wolves are known to be alive and are still being monitored. The estimated population in Idaho is 115 wolves. This is the first year that one component of recovery (10 breeding pairs) is attained.
November 1998 - Idaho Wolf Oversight Committee begins working on a new Idaho Wolf Conservation and Management Plan.
1998 - State Sen. Stan Hawkins ear-marks Fish and Game funds to study predator impacts on big game animals, focusing on wolves in the Salmon region.
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March 1997 - Legislature amends 36-715 to cut Fish and Game's authority to receive and use money from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Fish and Game's nongame management fund. It limits Fish and Game's authority to working with the Wolf Oversight Committee to develop and coordinate wolf management plans with state officials of Wyoming and Montana. It extends the life of its wolf oversight committee through December 1999 so that the committee can develop a management plan to enable the state to take over management of wolves upon delisting.
1996 - Governor Phil Batt recommends the State become more involved in the wolf recovery process.
1996 - First pups produced in Idaho; 3 known packs identified.
January 1996 - An additional 20 wolves released near Dagger Falls at the edge of the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness in central Idaho.
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January 20, 1995 - Eleven wolves released at Indian Creek and Thomas Creek along the Middle Fork Salmon River in central Idaho.
January 17, 1995 - The Idaho Legislature rejects a Wolf Recovery and Management Plan produced by the Legislative Wolf Oversight Committee, which would have allowed Fish and Game to assume the lead role in wolf recovery in Idaho. Nez Perce Tribe eventually takes recovery effort lead.
January 14, 1995 - Four wolves released at Corn Creek on the edge of the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness.
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December 2, 1994 - The Idaho Fish and Game Commission adopts a policy in support of wolf reintroduction in central Idaho as an experimental, nonessential population. The commission adopted the position to allow state control of wolf management.
- Final Experimental Population Rules issued and published in the Federal Register.
- Litigation filed by Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund, Farm Bureau, and others regarding the release of wolves and the use of the Experimental Population designation.
- Negotiations over Fish and Wildlife Service policy decision regarding involvement of Nez Perce Tribe.
- Six public meetings around the state on state wolf management plan between November 7 and December 9; 62 written comments are received.
- Experimental Population Rules - U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, PDF File
October 1994 - The Idaho wolf management plan nears completion.
October 17, 1994 - Public comment period on proposed Experimental Population Rules closes. Some members of the Idaho Wolf Oversight Committee submit comments on the final experimental population rules, noting that if the Fish and Wildlife Service does not change the final experimental rules to further reduce protection of wolves and increase protection of livestock interests, they would push the Legislature to ban all state involvement in wolf recovery and management.
October 14, 1994 - Interagency meeting to develop and prioritize a list of potential release sites.
October 6, 1994 - Wolf biologist Jon Rachael updates the Idaho Fish and Game Commission on wolf recovery activities, including the current reintroduction timeline.
September 27, 1994
- Fish and Game Director Jerry Conley submits a letter to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service expressing support for proposed experimental, nonessential population rules, which would give Idaho more management flexibility than if endangered gray wolves return naturally or are reintroduced in Idaho under the full protection of the Endangered Species Act. The letter says Fish and Game will work with the Fish and Wildlife Service, only to the extent allowed by Idaho law, to reintroduce wolves in Idaho under the experimental population rules.
Wildlife manager Tom Reinecker issues a special permit to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service setting specific conditions under which wolves would be brought into Idaho as an experimental nonessential population. The permit is a courtesy by Idaho Fish and Game in accordance with state law, and with the Idaho wolf management plan currently being drafted by Idaho Fish and Game and the Legislative Wolf Oversight Committee.
September 27-29, 1994 - Public hearings on Proposed Experimental Rule held in Boise, Helena, Cheyenne, Seattle, Salt Lake City, and Washington D.C.
August 16, 1994
- Proposed Experimental Population Rules for Yellowstone and central Idaho published in the Federal Register, and 60-day comment period begins.
- States and Tribe can enter cooperative agreements with the Fish and Wildlife Service to take lead if they develop suitable wolf management plans. State and tribal wolf management activities would be funded by the Fish and Wildlife Service until wolves are removed from the Endangered Species List.
- Experimental population areas would be established for the central Idaho and Yellowstone areas. In northern Idaho, north of I-90, wolves will retain full protection of the Endangered Species Act.
- 15 wolves to be reintroduced in central Idaho and 15 in Yellowstone National Park for three to five years or until at least two packs establish and reproduce successfully in two consecutive years.
- Wolves are expected to reach the recovery level of at least 10 breeding pairs that breed successfully for three consecutive years by 2002.
August 10, 1994 - Record of Decision is published in Federal Register.
July 13, 1994 - Secretary of Agriculture signs a letter concurring with the Record of Decision. This assures the full cooperation of the U.S. Forest Service.
June 15, 1994 - Secretary of Interior signs the EIS Record of Decision supporting the Fish and Wildlife Service's proposed action and directed that it be implemented as soon as possible.
May 4, 1994
- EIS is completed. The Fish and Wildlife Service proposes to reintroduce wolves into central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park as a nonessential experimental population. If states and tribes develop acceptable wolf management plans, they could enter into a cooperative agreement with the Fish and Wildlife Service to take lead in managing wolves.
April 7, 1994
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- Legislature amends Idaho Code §36-715 to allow Fish and Game to work with the Wolf Oversight Committee to develop and implement an Idaho Wolf Management Plan to provide an opportunity for the state to take a lead role in wolf management, in anticipation that the EIS would recommend reintroduction of wolves into Idaho under a "nonessential, experimental" status.
The change rescinds authority for Fish and Game to enter into agreements with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, but it allows Fish and Game to receive funds from Fish and Wildlife in the development and implementation of the wolf management plan in conjunction with the Wolf Oversight Committee.
July 1993 - Draft EIS released and results in 160,284 comments from public, agencies, and interest groups. It contains a Fish and Wildlife Service proposal to reintroduce gray wolves into Yellowstone National Park and central Idaho if two naturally occurring wolf packs are not found in either area before October 1994.
1992 - The Legislature establishes a seven member Wolf Oversight Committee "to guide and advise the department in all aspects of their involvement in the EIS process." The committee would oversee the participation of Fish and Game in development of the EIS on wolf reintroduction to Yellowstone and Central Idaho. The wolf oversight committee includes the chairmen of the Legislature's Senate and House Resource Committees, a member appointed by the Idaho State Animal Damage Control Board, two citizens appointed by the state Department of Agriculture, and two citizen appointed by Fish and Game.
April 1992 - Legislature amends Idaho Code §36-715 to allow Fish and Game "to enter into cooperative agreements with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service" to prepare the environmental impact statement.
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November 1991 - Congress directs U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to prepare an environmental impact statement on the plan to reintroduce wolves into central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park.
1991 - The Wolf Management Committee submits its plan to Congress.
November 1990 - Congress established a national Wolf Management Committee, directing the Secretary of the Interior to appoint a 10-member committee to develop a gray wolf reintroduction and management plan for Yellowstone National Park and the Central Idaho wilderness area. Fish and Game Director Jerry Conley is appointed a member of the committee.
May 1990 - U.S. Sen. James McClure, R-Idaho, introduces legislation mandating the return of the gray wolf to Yellowstone National Park and creating protected recovery areas in Glacier National Park and in wilderness areas of central Idaho, where limited numbers of wolves would be reintroduced. Outside the recovery areas, wolves would be removed from the endangered species list and could be considered pests or game animals. The bill did not pass.
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1980s - 1915
1988 - State Legislature authorizes an Idaho Fish and Game representative to participate on the Northern Rocky Mountain Recovery Team, it restricts Fish and Game's authority to receive funds or transfer assets or enter agreements with any agency regarding wolf recovery activities unless expressly authorized by state statute, §36-715.
1987 - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northern Rocky Mountain Gray Wolf Recovery Plan of 1980 is updated.
1980s - Numerous field surveys conducted in Idaho to document the presence of wolves.
1980 - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northern Rocky Mountain Wolf Recovery Plan is signed. It recommends reintroducing wolves in central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park. Its goal is 30 breeding pairs for three successive years in three designated areas of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming before delisting wolves and turning management over to the states.
- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service relists the gray wolf as endangered at the species level throughout the conterminous 48 States and Mexico, except for Minnesota where it is reclassified as threatened.
- Four subspecies of gray wolves (Canis lupus) are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act - the gray wolf in the Northern Rocky Mountains, the eastern timber wolf in the northern Great Lakes region, the Mexican wolf in Mexico and the southwestern United States, and the Texas gray wolf of Texas and Mexico.
1967 - Gray wolves listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966, which is repealed in 1973 and replaced by the Endangered Species Act.
1915 - Congress appropriates $125,000 to remove wolves, coyotes and other predators from public land throughout the West. In Idaho, the last wolf is believed to have been killed in the 1930s.